Despite the peak tourist season, visitor arrivals by air has slowed down in November due to the government's apathy in promoting tourism that has been significantly contributing foreign currency to the national coffer.
"The upward trend that was briefly interrupted in October continued again in the 11th month of the year showing rising travel demand as the Immigration Office, Tribhuwan International Airport data revealed that visitor arrivals in November — as compared to the same month last year — increased by 2.2 per cent to 59,411 visitors," said Nepal Tourism Board.
The aggregate growth for the period between January to November has posted a growth of 11.5 per cent as compared to the same period last year.
Arrivals by air during the peak season slowed down due to the poor performance by the SAARC market as it has declined by 23 per cent as compared to the same month last year.
"The Indian market — considered to be a major market — has declined by 21.6 per cent, followed by Bangladesh and Sri Lanka — negative growth of 37.3 per cent and 24 per cent, respectively — despite Pakistan registering a growth of 12.8 per cent," it said.
Arrivals from Asia — except South Asia — recorded a growth of 20.9 per cent in aggregate, with China — one of the fastest growing tourist markets globally and for Nepal too — posting a sustained growth of 9.6 per cent as compared to the same period in 2011. Similarly, Malaysia (151.4 per cent), Thailand (97.6 per cent), Singapore (31.3 per cent) and Japan (12.5 per cent) also maintained growth, though arrivals from South Korea dropped by 12.2 per cent.
European markets registered a meagre growth of 3.1 per cent as arrivals from the UK, Germany, Italy, and Netherlands increased by 18.3 per cent, 14.7 per cent, two per cent and 17.7 per cent, respectively. Arrivals from France and Spain declined by 7.1 per cent and 22.6 per cent, respectively, as compared to the same month last year.
Arrivals from Australia, New Zealand and the US registered a growth of 29.5 per cent, 30.50 per cent and 12.6 per cent, respectively, whereas arrivals from Canada declined by 10.3 per cent.Likewise, a total of 84,729 foreign tourists departed from Tribhuwan International Airport in November, which is an increase of 12.35 per cent as compared to the same month last year, whereas 68,977 Nepalis departed from and some 72,735 Nepalis arrived at the country's only international airport.